French cop drama Main Courant has arrived on this side of the Atlantic, and all eight episodes are now available for streaming on TV5Monde Cinema on Demand.
Set in a working-class suburb of Nantes, Main Courante (Police Log) is a character-driven cop drama that follows the day-to-day policing activities of les flics at the local precinct. The seemingly never-ending interactions with the citizenry, both at the station and on the streets, range from petty complaints and family disputes to thefts and assaults.
Heading up the precinct is Commander Kreusky (Marie Bunel, The French Minister), a hard-to-please boss with a hair-trigger temper and propensity for throwing tantrums, files, and other objects she has at her disposal. Key members of her team include the imposing veteran office Captain Pierre Cliquot (Michaël Vander-Meiren, Nicolas Le Floch), the nice and naive Lieutenant Samuel Laurent (Jean-Baptiste Puech, The Transporter Refueled), tough-cookie cop Lieutenant Karine Verboit (Juliette Navis, The Tunnel), and the young and less-experienced Officer Manon (Leslie Lipkins, Heidi). All of them roll up to Police Commissioner Stéphane Mercier (Benjamin Egner, Second Chance), who seems to focus more on the crime statistics rather than the actual crimes being committed under his watch.
Main Courante opens with “Fin de Mois” (“End of the Month”), the worst time of the month for cops and complainants but not necessarily crooks. Sam is broke, the ATM ate his cash card, and his colleagues won’t lend him any money. There are so many people waiting to speak with the police at the station that Cliquot tells one guy to come back in three days, because the last day of the month is un bordel (a mess). And a couple of young thugs rob an old lady on the streets, leaving her needing hospitalization.
Meanwhile, a complaint that was called in brings Karine and Manon to a flat where an infant is put in grave danger, and Sam’s prostitute friend unwittingly gets him into serious trouble by doing him a much-needed favor.
Unlike series such as Spiral (Engrenages), the storylines in Main Courante have very little to do with the criminal investigation aspect; rather, they focus on the dramas of the characters, such as the emotional life of the daughter of the mugging victim in the first episode. The crimes are small time, as it were, and offer a view of quotidian police work rarely shown in Euro TV dramas.
Written by Marie Guilmineau (Spin), Main Courante premieres in the US today (14 April 2017) and is available on TV5Monde Cinema on Demand through 13 July 2017. You can find the subscription channel on Sling TV and Comcast Xfinity. (If you’re not a TV5Monde subscriber, you can try it with the free 7-day trial.) The series is shown in French; however, English subtitles are available with Xfinity only.
For those of you who are fluent in French, TV5Monde Cinema on Demand also has the second season of crime drama Duel au Soleil (Duel in the Sun), which is available for streaming until 6 July 2017.